Egyptian activist Maikel Nabil Sanad, who spent 10 months in military jails following Egypt’s January Revolution, is in a controversial visit to Israel and Ramallah this weekend to call for peace.
Sanad is scheduled to speak at The Hebrew University in Jerusalem, The World Union of Jewish Students and Tel Aviv University. He also plans to visit Ramallah in the West Bank.
“After years of calling for peace, I decided that practicing peace is more important than talking about it. My visit is a message from the peaceful society of Egypt. We went through enough of violence and clashes and this situation has to end,” Sanad wrote in a statement on his blog www.maikelnabil.com.
“We want to both live like human beings without violence, racism or walls,” he added.
“The main goal of my visit is to end my government’s monopoly on the peace process. Even If I fail, their feeling that there is a competitor will prompt them to work more seriously toward peace,” Sanad said.
Two months after the Jan. 25, 2011 uprising, Sanad was arrested by military forces for criticizing the then ruling Supreme Military Council for violence against pro-democracy protesters.
In January 2012 and amid mounting anger at the ruling military, Sanad was released along with 2,000 others in a move to appease protesters.
Sanad’s trip to Israel and Palestine was organized by Geneva-based advocacy group U.N. Watch.
Hillel Neuer, executive director described Nabil as “a true hero who inspires hope around the world,” according to a CNN report.
U.N. Watch is affiliated with the American Jewish Committee.